I never knew watering plants would bring me such peace.
It was a sort of visit to the past, to those distant years of single-digit-aged childhood when I’d joyfully grip the faded yellow hose-pipe with both my hands and watch the water spout out of the aperture; cover half of it with a thumb and marvel at the many streams of water that flowed out, dripping, gushing in song onto the sun-baked mud. It was a hot area- marked by dust storms, the loos of the north- the water must have felt like ambrosia to the parched plants.
All this ignorant mind knew then, though, was the delight of white foam on brown soil, bubbling and gurgling in small swirls and puddles that seemed to stand still, but were in fact slowly being sucked thirstily in. I’d watch till the pool disappeared and the soil turned refreshingly moist, the fragrance wafting up to my eager nostrils. Nothing gratifies unaccustomed senses like nature.
What ‘watering plants’ first meant to me was dousing the drooping plants in water, letting it rain over the leaves and stems and watching the drops left behind in fascination. A little enlightenment led to the realisation that it was the roots, in fact, through which nourishment reached all parts of the plant, and not the ritual bath that I persisted in giving them.
I gave the plants names and spoke to them long before I heard of the theory of conversations with plants promoting their growth. I don’t know if it really helped.
And today, watering an absent roommate’s plants after repeatedly forgetting to do so, I had to say good night to the forlorn orange rose, relegated to a dark corner of the balcony. I had an exaggerated, misplaced sense of doing good- but how fulfilling it was! Is this what it means to find happiness in the little surprises life brings you?